These days almost every software you download from the internet comes with some sort of browser add-ons like a toolbar. Although these toolbars claim to offer a multitude of useful features, they usually send your internet browsing behaviour to the advertising companies where it is used to present you with relevant ads. Now avast!, the makers of the popular avast! Antivirus and avast! Internet Security, have come up with a free tool called avast! Browser Cleanup which can be used to remove unwanted toolbars and other add-ons from your installed browsers.
avast! Browser Cleanup supports the three most popular web browsers – Microsoft Internet Explorer, Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. It works by collecting the information about your installed add-ons and then sending it to the avast! servers. Then it displays the add-ons with low rating and offers you to remove them.
avast! Browser Cleanup is a portable tool and does not require installation on PC. After downloading it from the avast! servers (see link at the end of this post), you can start running it immediately. It would collect the information about the installed add-ons in various web browsers, consult its community ratings over the internet and then give you a suggestion about what should be removed.
You can click on the Remove button to remove the selected add-ons. If you want, then you can view all the installed add-ons for a particular web browser by clicking on a browser icon in the left (Internet Explorer, Firefox or Chrome). By default, it hides all the add-ons with good ratings. But you can view all the installed add-ons for a web browser (both with good and low ratings) by unchecking the checkbox Exclude add-ons with a good rating.
Here you can click on the Disable button against a web browser add-on to disable that particular add-on. You can also reset the web browser settings by clicking on the Reset browser settings to default values. This would change the various critical settings for your web browser like home page, search page etc. to their default values.
avast! Browser Cleanup is a part of the newly released version of the avast! Antivirus version 8. So if you have already installed the avast! antivirus 8 on your PC, then you can access this tool from the antivirus interface. If you are using some other security software, then you can download the portable avast! Browser Cleanup tool and use it to remove or disable unwanted add-ons and toolbars from your web browsers.
You can download avast! Browser Cleanup from http://files.avast.com/files/tools/avast-browser-cleanup.exe.